Ambassador Fatimie participates in “Towards a Polio-Free World” event hosted by UNICEF

February 27, 2013: Ambassador Dr. Sayed M. Amin Fatimie participated in a reception and photo exhibition entitled “Towards a Polio-Free World,” hosted by UNICEF at the United Nations University in Tokyo.

UNICEF and partner organizations have been working to free the world of polio. Cases still exist in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, and the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The event allowed for the sharing of progress and the rallying of support. Speakers included Dr. Bruce Aylward, Assistant Director-General for Polio, Emergencies and Country Collaboration for the World Health Organization; Dr. Julie Hall, Head of Polio Programme for UNICEF; H.E. Ambassador Godwin Agbo of the Federal Republic of Nigeria; and Ambassador Dr. Fatimie. Ambassador Dr. Fatimie was honored with the distinction of being cited as an inspiration by the UNICEF representative.

In his speech, Ambassador Dr. Fatimie first of all offered sincerest gratitude for the work that has been done by the nations and organizations represented. Speaking of the progress that has been made thus far, he mentioned that this was only possible due to the unified efforts that have happened thus far. Building upon this, Ambassador Dr. Fatimie asked ‘why are human beings fighting and killing one another when we should be united against our common enemies: disease, poverty, ignorance, corruption, injustice, and violence. These problems know no borders. To solve these problems and worldwide polio eradication requires the eradication in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Nigeria. Therefore this should not be a time to say goodbye, but we should instead think to meet again in the future and to continue to fight together. The Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan considers polio eradication a top priority, and this holy mission is supported with full political will.”

Ambassador Dr. Fatimie had the opportunity to speak with each of the aforementioned individuals and to thank and praise them for their individual and collective efforts to battle polio, both during the Ambassador’s time as Public Health Minister and beyond. He was also able to meet with a number of other key individuals, including H.E. Parliamentary Vicer Minister of Defense Akira Sato; Hon. Parliamentarian Kenzo Fujisue, and representatives of Rotary International, NHK, and TBS.